Supertitles

Can’t speak French? Neither can we!

That’s why we have Supertitles!

We want you to understand every word of the performance. That’s why we use Supertitles! Supertitles are translated lyrics or dialogue projected above the stage, in easy-to-read English, and make it easy to understand and follow the opera. In addition to translating foreign languages from their original Italian or French, we use supertitles even when the opera is sung in English.

Fun Facts:

  • The word “surtitle” comes from the French language “sur”, meaning “over” or “on”, and the English language word “title”, formed in a similar way to the related subtitle.
  • Supertitles are also called Surtitles, and that word is a trademark of the Canadian Opera Company.
  • New York City Opera was the first American opera company to use supertitles in 1983.
  • The surtitle is given an insertion point in the score (piano score) for the surtitle’s entry and exit. An operator will push a button at the marked point when following the music.